By: Saul Flores, CAMPUSPEAK Speaker

Why We Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month

From our sandy shores to our brightly colored homes, our heritage is rooted in a diaspora of cultures that are spread across Latin America. We celebrate Hispanic Heritage month to encourage students to remember where they came from, where they are, and where they will go. We look into our past to understand our future, and to discover the great potential we have as students from immigrant backgrounds.

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Where we’re from.

Latin America is a kaleidoscope of 21 countries, with hundreds of cultures and influences from around the world. Our diverse heritage spans the glistening lakes of Guatemala, the trembling volcanoes of Nicaragua, the highest peaks of Colombia, and the dry deserts of Mexico. In Guatemala, you will find rich and vibrant textiles. In Argentina, you will dance to the rhythms of tango and hear the echoes of ancient folk music. Across every Latin American nation, you will find a unique blend of tradition, community, and pride.

Where we are.

In today’s shifting political climate, it is common to see our Latino, Latina, and Latinx students facing challenges such as fear, uncertainty, and instability. Policy changes continue to contribute added pressures for members of our community who have worked tirelessly for an opportunity. Recent changes to immigration policies are separating families, alienating communities, and affecting students from immigrant backgrounds. These shifts in climate are making it increasingly difficult for students to focus, be confident in their abilities, and remain ambitious toward reaching their dreams.

Where we’ll go.

Despite the challenges, our communities continue to persevere and our students remain more hopeful than ever. Our students celebrate the life of leaders like Dolores Huerta, American labor leader and civil rights activist who advocated for farmworkers rights in California. Our students draw inspiration from figures like Cesar Chavez, whose legacy inspired a civil rights movement for Latin American immigrants in the United States.

Today, and every day, students of immigrant background celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month to remember our past, to discuss where we are, and to help take control of our future.

Learn more about Saul Flores and his programs at campuspeak.com/flores.